10/06/2004 12:18 AM ET
Larry Walker, Game 1 quotes
Cardinals outfielder happy to finally be in postseason
Q. Was the wait for the postseason worth it to you?
A. Yeah. It was nine and a half years. It was. It was a lot of fun out there today to see the packed house, everybody in red, you know. It was a good feeling.
Q. You had struggled in your career against Perez, 1-for-16 or something. Was there any change you made today?
A. You don't have to ask it twice. It's 1-for-32 now or 2-for-32. I knew how bad I batted against Odalis. I knew that going in, just horrible at-bats. Really, the first at-bat was horrible. I just tried to cut down my swing is all I tried to do the second at-bat. I tried to swing easy. I wasn't trying to hit a home run, just trying to hit a line drive somewhere, and up it went. I was very fortunate.
Q. Can you talk a little about the atmosphere here in the postseason as opposed to the regular season for a St. Louis game?
A. You know, talking to the family last night, they were asking me are you going to get fired up, you guys have been on the cruise control for the last few weeks. Once we take the field and see everybody dressed in red, the atmosphere is the playoffs. There's only three other teams up on the board. That's enough to get your heart going and it did. My heart was pounding the whole game. It was a lot of fun. You're into the
game and into the situations going on.
Q. Can you talk a little about how long it took you to feel a part of this club after joining?
A. Really, quite quick. When I first got from the trade, it was two messages I got, one from Scott Rolen and one from Jim Edmonds. That's how I found out things were happening here. Just to hear those two guys talk, I knew Jimmy a little bit from times we've been together. Everybody's laid back. They're a great team.
Everybody's funny and easy to get along with. I kind of slid right in there with my goofiness, and it worked out.
Q. Did you feel you should have caught the double that fell early in the game?
A. Yeah. Thanks. I'd give you one back but I got two myself. You know, there's no excuses. The ball was in the sun. It came into the shade. I had trouble seeing it, but the damn thing hit my glove. It hits my glove, I should have caught it. It should have been scored an error, not a double. I disagree with it.
Q. You had curtain calls after the home run. Are you a fan of curtain calls, do you like that?
A. It is kind of neat. I never had one in my career before I came to St. Louis, so it's kind of like old hat here. Everybody's -- what did we have, five curtain calls today. The fans -- I think the word's gotten around. Fans love it, and the players don't have any problem. I wish you could experience one time and see what it's like. It is quite amazing to tip your hat and everybody cheer a little bit higher decibel when you step on that top step.
Q. When you first joined the Cardinals, they already had a pretty good lead. This maybe is the first really stressful game since you've joined the Cardinals. How did that feel?
A. Well, it might be my second stressful game. The first one I played, it was quite a mess that day. You know, it's just -- I don't know. I'm one that doesn't believe in pressure. I'm going to go out there and succeed or I'm going to fail. We're going to win or lose. I don't go beyond that. I don't look at pressure here, stress there. I think basically that's the way we took it. I mean, oddly enough, in the clubhouse today and before the game, everything was basically the same as before a regular season game
except maybe a minute before we took the field. We were a little bit more amped up and guys were chatting a little bit more.
Q. How important was getting a bunch of runs early to ease things for Woody?
A. Well, it was huge. It was huge for him to go out there and put you in a scoreless top of the inning. He got us on the board and I think as a pitcher, which I'm not, but to have a six-run lead in the third inning has got to be a good feeling for him, probably relaxed him a lot. I talked to him on the bench. He said he was going a million miles a minute up there, yeah, a million miles a minute, and that probably calmed him down a lot.
Courtesy of FastScripts by ASAP Sports. This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.